Sears, Roebuck and Co (NYSE:S) is extending its contract with HNC Software Inc, the company that supplies its retail fraud detection system. The Falcon(™) system, from HNC subsidiary HNC Financial Solutions, protects more than 60 million Sears credit accounts.

Due to the significant reduction in fraud losses, the nation's largest retail card issuer renewed its agreement with HNC to protect its retail card portfolio, which includes the Sears Card and Sears Premier Card.

"We have been pleased with the performance of our Falcon Retail system over the past three years, and we see value in continuing our relationship with HNC through this new long-term arrangement," said Bill Redmond, director of fraud and bankruptcy management for Sears Credit.

As part of the agreement, Sears will implement an additional, credit card-specific Falcon model to protect its forthcoming co-branded MasterCard offering against fraud. Sears will also explore expanding its use of the Falcon system for fraud protection in its e-commerce operations.

"We see our relationship with HNC resulting in continued refinements as we apply Falcon's proven fraud detection technology to these additional domains," added Redmond.

Using retail-specific statistical models developed with HNC's proprietary neural network technology, Falcon Retail can determine the probability of fraud with each card transaction. When the probability of fraud reaches a critical threshold, Falcon Retail can either block the transaction at the point of sale or send the case to one of the retailer's fraud analysts for action.

About Sears, Roebuck and Co
Sears, Roebuck and Co. is a leading US retailer of apparel, home, and automotive products and services with annual revenues of nearly $40bn. The company serves families throughout the US through approximately 860 department stores, more than 2,100 specialized retail locations, and a variety of online offerings.

About HNC Software
HNC Software Inc is a leading provider of predictive software solutions for the financial, insurance, telecommunications, and e-commerce service industries. HNC's suite of predictive software solutions can provide real-time insight into customer relationships based on transaction-level data, helping companies manage their relationships with individual customers. By accurately predicting customer behaviors, these companies can create initiatives to mitigate risk and attrition; improve customer service; develop marketing programs to enhance profitability; and detect fraudulent customer transactions. For more information, visit HNC's website at www.hnc.com.